Modern Handmade Child

Sunday, October 30, 2011

I'm Just Sayin' by Alan P. Scaglione

                                       "It is you know What is Written?"

“I’m Just Sayin’”

by Alan P. Scaglione

As my daily devotional, I’m reading the New Testament again, starting in Matthew. For me, every time I do this, I learn something new that applies fresh to my life and to my spirit. His Word really is life!

So I’m reading in Matthew 4 where Jesus is in the wilderness for 40 days, fasting and praying.

Hmmm… fasting AND praying?

How many of us even fast anymore?

Waiting for the microwave to hurry up and cook your food does NOT count as fasting!

For 40 days? Really? Who still does this?

I can tell you that my wife and I fast the first 21 days of each year—sacrificing something that means more to us than food—TV!!

For us, turning off all television for 21 days, spending our evenings in prayer, contemplation, meditating on the Word, just starts our year out right!

We started this at our last church, and I know they still do it each year. We don’t attend there anymore, but it was a good habit to continue.

Reading this passage, it says Jesus was hungry. See, He was 100% man and 100% God.

After 40 days, who wouldn’t be hungry? Who are we kidding? Go 4 hours past our normal meal time, and you may need to hide sharp edges!

Then it happened—the devil tempted Him!

And each time…Jesus said the same thing--- IT IS WRITTEN!

WOW! Here’s the Son of God, who could just say POOF be gone!

But instead, He used the Scripture to respond to the temptation!

Made me wonder?

Who knows scripture anymore?

I know I’m old school, but…

I was raised on Sword Drills! Not the “slice you in half because it’s too sharp to touch” kind of sword…

No, the “two edged, cutting to the bone and marrow” kind of sword—the Word of God!

We would close our Bibles, and someone would yell out a scripture verse, and we would have to be the first one to find it!

We also memorized verses and got rewarded for knowing the scripture! Of course, we also had Sunday School classes!

I know, I know…most of you have turned me off already, but…humor me, read on just a few more minutes, please.

We have become a nation that does not know the Word of God!

We can’t quote it, we can’t reference it, we can’t respond with it—we are Scripture Illiterate!

What if we applied this to our Constitution?

How many know the 1st amendment? The 4th amendment? The 5th amendment?

We use them to defend our rights as U.S. citizens!

What about when someone challenges why you believe what you believe as a heavenly citizen?

What scripture do you reference to respond with the Word, just like Jesus said…”It Is Written!”

The average Christian these days doesn’t spend time in the Word…they are too busy with Facebook or their IPhone!

They have an app for the Word, but…it never gets used…much less taking time to memorize the scripture.

The Word says, “Thy Word have I hidden in my heart so I might not sin against Thee!”

But… that’s just not a priority these days--disappointing God with the sin in our lives!

Everyone is so politically correct, even in the church. It’s not sin, it’s a “problem I’m dealing with” or “God understands why I can’t stop it!”

We are scripturally illiterate -- a nation that is no longer God fearing! The only place we trust God is where it’s printed on our money!

Hosea 4:6 says “My People perish for a lack of knowledge!”

It Is Written!

Do you know What Is Written?

Maybe…It’s Time to Find Out!

Until Next Time

I’m Just Sayin’…

Brother “A”

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Points2Ponder by Alan P. Scaglione

                       "Looks like that chicken laid a BIG egg...with GLASSES!"

Sometimes, I guess you just have to toot your own horn.

We were going thru the art show this past weekend, and I saw something that made me laugh out loud!

There was a crowd gathered around this man who was busy at work, nose to the grindstone determination, doing his craft.

He apparently paints chicken eggs—with all kinds of pictures and designs, while you wait.

So of course, there was a crowd of people…watching and waiting.

Believe it or not, it’s NOT the crowd that stopped me dead in my tracks with that shock that goes—are you serious?

Nope. It wasn’t the crowd that day.

It was … that chicken hat!

This man was fast at work, painting his eggs, with this hat on.

He never looked up, never spoke a word. His wife was taking orders, but…the Chicken Man was a man on a mission!

Sometimes, I just have to capture a picture because…you would never believe me otherwise!

POINTS2PONDER Why do some people have the confidence to make a fool of themselves just to make a point or promote a product? Why can’t we just laugh along while appreciating the boldness it took to step out of the car—looking like that! Maybe embarrassment is just perception!

So back to the chicken hat!

I pushed through the crowd, excusing myself as I got closer to that hat!

Did I mention that I was still laughing? In fact, I had started to outright giggle at the sight of this very serious old man, head bent down, paint brush in hand, painting his eggshells, intent on his work.

In a chicken hat!

Reminded me of the many times I have done something so outrageous or dressed up in a funny outfit or wore a hilarious hat—just to get somebody’s attention!

One time, in my younger days, in high school, it was Action Hero Dress Up Day. Guess they were envisioning Batman or Superman or Captain America. I decided to make up an action hero, and I created “The Green Triangle”. I wore a striped Kelly green bedsheet like a diaper and a solid green towel as a cape. I then cut up green construction paper and used elmer’s glue to affix 100 triangles on my face and chest and arms and legs. Two things: I was 17 and I was already a hairy beast! I did NOT think thru the use of elmer’s glue…especially the TAKING OFF of 100 glued-on triangles! OUCH! That hurt for days!! And yes, it left a mark!

So I know….how it feels to have all eyes upon you….and drawing attention, with people either laughing with you OR laughing at you!

I also know…there was method to his madness!

I just didn’t know what…yet!

So I make my way to the area in front of Chicken Man, and I have been taught by my wife to ask, so…I asked, ”Excuse me sir, I love your hat, may I take your picture?”

He put his pointer finger up to ask me to wait a moment.

I wasn’t sure if he was about to lecture me or just make me wait.

He finished his painting, put down his brush, reached down for a moment and….

Pulled out a sign and placed it under his chin—and smiled the biggest smile!

And that’s the picture you see!

Everyone cracked up laughing!! There was a spontaneous roar of laughter coming from that crowd watching “Chicken Hat Man!”

And now…we all know his website too!

Guess you just gotta be ready—to toot your own horn!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

I'm Just Sayin by Alan P. Scaglione

“God’s calling—can you hear Him in this crowd?”

                                          I’m Just Sayin’”
                                                                 by Alan P. Scaglione

I get paid to listen to people, all day long- I’m in disability insurance. People tell me their problems, and I listen. And sometimes, I get to minister, in the middle of it all. I call it “Drive By Ministry”. If I can offer an encouraging word or spiritual insight, I do. And I often tell them that I will pray for them because…I will.
There are a lot of hurting people in our world, and they just want to know…is someone listening?
This Mom called concerning her son. He had been in a single car accident, fallen asleep(so he says, she commented!) and he landed in a ditch. She said he was lucky to be alive, but he just wasn’t listening. She didn’t know what else needed to happen before…God got his attention.
Apparently, the Mom found out that a fence post rammed thru the back of her son’s headrest, missing his head by inches.
She was exasperated…I felt the pain of this mom wondering…what was it going to take for her son to turn his life around.
I told her, “sometimes, God speaks in a whisper, like a cool breeze blowing on your face in the middle of July; and sometimes, God speaks loudly, like thunder…depending what it takes to get your attention!”
The Mom responded, without missing a beat “yeh but sometimes, God ZAPS you like lightning—that ALWAYS gets your attention!”
We both chuckled and then I said, “well, looks like the whisper didn’t work with your son!”
She retorted, “and let’s see if the zap does!”
That conversation made me wonder? What does it take for God to get our attention?
Guess it all depends… on how intune we are…to His voice!
The picture I used this week is of the Mount Dora Fall Art Festival, held this weekend. We went and walked around, in the midst of the roaring crowd.
So many people-- all moseying and meandering through the streets, appreciating or ignoring the art, depending on what interested them.
It was a growing roar as the day wore on…hard to hear each other comment on the art due to the blare of the crowd.
And yet, in the middle of all of this cacophony of voices, my cell phone rings, and I heard it—and answered.
All because…I was intune with the sound of my cell phone ringing, and I knew that sound and my mind was alert to that sound…and I responded.
Hmmmm! Anybody see where I am going here?
Maybe we are not intune with hearing His voice anymore? So, a “whisper” isn’t heard, “thunder” gets overlooked and even “lightning” is ignored!
Seems to me…a breeze across my face feels so much better than a lightning bolt in my back. Just depends….on how well we listen.
I was reminded of the passage of scripture in 1 Kings 19:11-13 when Elijah was searching for God. Scripture says, he looked in the mountain, but God wasn’t there; Elijah looked in the earthquake, but He wasn’t there; He looked in the fire and the rain, but He wasn’t there; finally, Word says, Elijah found God in a still small voice!
It doesn’t take a crackling bolt of lightning IF we will listen to a whisper.
When’s the last time we heard God’s voice?
When’s the last time we were waiting, alert and ready when He called?
What if He called you on your cell phone in the middle of a crowded, roaring street of people—would you hear Him then?
One thing’s for sure…
When God wants your attention, He will use whatever means necessary to get it!
Guess that really depends on you!

Until Next Time
I’m Just Sayin’…
Brother “A”

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Points2Ponder by Alan P. Scaglione

“JJ and His Nano Scooping out the Autumn Harvest Pumpkin!”

Last Saturday night, I was standing around the breakfast bar at Jett’s new house, with his Mom and Dad and Nana on one side, and Jett was on the other side, standing on a step stool that he uses to help his mom wash dishes.
He’s two and a half, and he likes to help Mommy wash dishes.
At two and a half, that’s cute, right?
Of course it is! Picture it, we’ve all experienced it, the little kid standing next to the adult, washing dishes, making more of a mess than if the adult just did it themselves, but the kid is smiling ear to ear because…he is helping mommy!
Fast forward 10 years and that same kid is whining and complaining, “Why do I have to do the dishes? That’s not a boy’s chore! That’s not fair!”
Wait—maybe that was just a memory of my son at that age. You know-- Jett’s Dad!
We were standing around, just sharing a moment. Jett and his parents and his grandparents—he had our full attention.
I asked him, “How ya doing, JJ?”
JJ—that’s my nickname for Jett Jameson. His parents don’t really like it, but…I’ve been calling him that since the day he was born.
Just six months ago, Jett was in the backseat, I was in the driver’s seat, driving to a play date, mine and Jett’s.
I looked in my rearview mirror, and I said, “How ya doin, JJ?”
He looks straight into my rearview mirror and says, “My name not JJ—My name JETT!”
Cracked me up! Nana laughed out loud. Yes, sometimes, we really do LOL!
He did not want to be called JJ—his name ”JETT!”
I got it, duly noted-- change the nickname.
But that was so long ago, Nano forgot Jett’s declaration! Yeh, right!
So I looked over at him and said, “How ya doing, JJ?”
He didn’t respond.
I said, “Who’s JJ?”
He smiled ear to ear and said “Me!”
I was shocked and pleased!
I said, “that’s right, you are Nano’s JJ !”
Finally, he got it! He accepted that I called him this name—his Nano’s special nickname for Jett Jameson.

I thought the moment was over.
Boy, was I wrong!
All of a sudden, Jett opens his mouth and, in a cute but mocking voice, blurts out… “How ya doin, JJ?”
His parents spontaneously bust out laughing!
Nano and Nana start laughing too—surprised to hear Jett-- mimicking Nano!
Jett starts giggling and then says, “Jett’s funny!”
We fell on the floor laughing, tears rolling from our eyes—this two year old had just imitated his Nano and brought the house down in the process!

POINTS2PONDER Why do we give up so easily? Just because it’s not sticking six months ago does not mean that it won’t stick now! Where’s our assiduity- sticktoitness! Just when you least expect it, it suddenly happens: the lesson you were trying to teach or the action you were trying to cultivate or even the connection you were trying to make—just clicks! All because—you didn’t give up too soon!

So there we were, witnessing my grandson’s first Standing O – as in “Oh no, he did not just say that!” Apparently—he just did!

And his first experience in entertaining and captivating an audience. Remember the first time you made the crowd laugh? I know I do.

Yep—“Nano’s JJ!” Jett Jameson…a comedian at the ripe old age of two!

Who knows?

He may just have a future in stand up!

He’s already proven he can handle a heckler!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

I'm Just Sayin

                                "It's Takes A Little Time Sometime!"

                                      “I’m Just Sayin’”
                                    by Alan P. Scaglione

I got a call from an old friend while on my way to work this week. She said she wanted to share some good news. She had emailed others, but she knew I would want to hear this first hand. She proceeded to remind me that she had been having severe back problems for that last few years, going to doctors, fighting with insurance companies who didn’t want to approve her back surgery. She was forced to go through the process of second and third opinions by doctors who agreed she needed the operation, but insurance was not convinced.

If you have ever been in this predicament, you know…insurance companies are sometimes difficult to convince and take too long to decide.

My friend had been praying this whole time that God would touch her back, guide the doctors and give her a miracle.

And still, her back grew worse each year.

She believed God could heal, trusted Him for her healing, but still…no healing!

The insurance company recently finally approved her back surgery, so she scheduled a surgery consultation with her surgeon. She hadn’t seen him in a while, so he asked for her to have MRIs done to see how much more her back had deteriorated since the last time they had MRIs done.

She had them done and went to her appointment.

She had been praying the whole time. The new church she is attending sings a song that talks about “God is going to turnaround, turnaround, turnaround your situation!” She stated she always knew He could…question was …if He would?

Her new Pastor told her that God was going to turn around her situation with her back.

She kept believing. Her new church believed also…they provided a fresh faith!

My friend met with the surgeon that morning, preparing to schedule the surgery.

The surgeon looked at the new MRIs and then looked at the old MRIs…then he looked again!

He looked up at her and said, “I can’t explain it, it’s nothing short of a miracle—you have had a complete turnaround in your back situation. My opinion is… you no longer need back surgery. The back condition has improved so much, we can treat the inflammation without any surgery! A real turnaround!”

She and her husband just shouted! They had gotten their miracle. It just took 4 years to get here!

And, just like her Pastor and that song said, and her doctor repeated—She got her turnaround!

It took fresh faith—and God’s timing!

For those of us who believe in healing, and remember that I do—God healed my heart this past January, confirmed by my cardiologist in March when he said that it was “just like my heart had never had a heart attack!”

Sometimes, healing is not instantaneous—sometimes, it takes a second touch. The first time, you may just see men as trees walking! That’s when God lays His hand on you again and then asks-- What do you see?

Some would settle for seeing men as trees; some would give up and say I guess God is not going to completely heal me; and then there are those who wait for that second touch of the Master’s hand—when the beginning is ended and the healing is complete!

Mark 8:22-25 Talks about Jesus healing the blind man from Bethsaida; He spat in His eyes and asked him what did he see? The blind man said, “I see men as trees walking!” Jesus put His hands on him AGAIN and then asked the blind man what he saw?

The blind man said, “I can see clearly now!”

Whatever healing you may need in your life, physical, emotional, mental, spiritual—don’t give up before He finishes what He started!

It may take fresh faith;

It may take a little time;

It always takes-- GOD’s HEALING HAND!

I for one…believe He still heals!

It may just take a complete turnaround!

Until Next Time

I’m Just Sayin’…

Brother “A”

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Points2Ponder By Alan P. Scaglione


You’d be surprised what you can find…at a yard sale!
My wife and I went with our friends Sandy and Derrick to their little town’s monthly yard sale. Happens first Saturday of each month. All the residents bring out their stuff and line up their display units for a few blocks, lining both sides of the road, right down Mainstreet SmalltownUSA.
You just never know what you will see…just when you think you’ve seen it all, there comes along:
A woman selling handmade adult bibs, for the elderly who have reached the place in life when…they need a bib.
I just never thought of that!
Or a ViewMaster with all 30 original disks. Kids today would be so bored to be forced to use it, but…my generation remembers it well.
How about a 1963 Archie Comics comic book—originally sold for 12 cents but…you can be the proud owner for only a dollar—what a steal!
I was taken aback by an old school desk. Not from 100 years ago—no, this one was about 45 years old. I remembered it well. I got stuck in that desk every day! I was that rotund boy who never quite fit in the school desk, the one with the fixed arm and desktop with the built in pencil holder. Yep—that was me. Squeezed in the desk- everyday!
So… sometimes, what you find takes you back to days gone by…and you’re glad—they’re long gone by!
Oh the things you can find…at a yard sale!
Like a metal mannequin made out of washers—I have to admit, I was mesmerized. I had to touch it…and I did! And my friend Sandy observed this moment—and she laughed out loud—literally, not the way we type LOL—she really did laugh out loud!
Glad there was NOT a picture to go with that memory!   Embarrassing!

POINTS2PONDER  Why is it that one man’s junk can be another man’s treasure? Why does one man throw away what another’s been searching for? Why does it take someone else wanting it for us to know how much we want to keep it? What does it take for us to just be grateful for what we have?

And in the midst of all of this-- I found it!
And it only cost a dollar!
What a find!
In a pile of stuff marked—“Everything’s a Dollar!”
It was my life’s mantra— being picked up and put back by everybody else—just waiting for me!
I say this every day of my life; at work, at home, on the phone, to myself.
And I had never run across it on a piece of wood, painted for all to see!
It said, “It’s All Good! My attitude is gratitude!
I just stopped and did that LOL—literally! I could not believe it—there it was, just waiting for me—I’d been waiting my whole life to find it..and it was only a dollar!
You could tell it was a relic from the 1970’s – one of those catchphrases that apparently did NOT catch on—except with me!
It’s the way I live…it’s what I say, sometimes sincerely, sometimes…sarcastically, but…I really DO say it every day!
“It’s all good!” and I shrug my shoulders and smile that smile that says…it’s just good to be alive!

Do you ever feel that way? No matter how many curves in the road, you can still see the sun in the horizon, and…It’s all good!
Maybe you need someone to want something you have that you take for granted…before you will realize the value in what you have in your hand!
Like your health? Or your spouse? Or your kids? Or your grandkids? Or just your attitude toward life?
You’d be surprised-- the things we take for granted…others would die to have!
One man’s junk…just may be another man’s treasure!
It’s all good!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

I'm Just Sayin by Alan P. Scaglione

“Our Princess MacieGirl—Tiara and Flipflops- Style All Her Own!”

                                          I’m Just Sayin’”
                                                                 by Alan P. Scaglione
I woke up to the sound of rain outside my window.
And I thought, “into every sunshiny life, a little rain must fall!”
It’s Saturday morning, and I have had plans for us all week!
There’s this Art Festival in our town. I love to go and listen to the artisans talk about their craft.
Well….that’s not gonna happen!

Into every sunshiny life….a little rain must fall.
I have this friend. I have known him since he was about 17. He was always a dependable, honorable son and friend.
He has now grown into a dependable and honorable husband and father of two.
And tries so hard to provide a good life for his family and yet…there is always a little rain falling in his life.
And he questions? Why is this always happening to me? Just seems like I just get over one hurdle and BAM…there’s another.
I remind him that “Life is what happens when you’re making other plans!”
Remember: God will never lead us where He cannot feed us!
I have this saying-- “All you need to know “good”…is to have had bad!”

Into every sunshiny life…a little rain must fall.
Got a call from my daughter last night around 11:30pm!
She said, “You still up?”
Little does she know. I sleep with the cell phone always by my side, just in case…one of my three kids need me…I don’t want to miss their call!
She proceeded to tell me that my 4 year old princess of a granddaughter Macie is going to have her tonsils out and her tubes in her ears taken out and her eardrums patched, all at the same time.
I asked how Macie felt about that. You have to know my Macie. She is 4 yours old but!!! She is headstrong, knows what she wants AND what she doesn’t, and will not budge if she decides she does NOT want to do something. She is loud and energetic and…a noisy bundle of joy! I adore her!
“Macie has decided she is not having surgery!”
We both laughed. At 4 years old, our MacieGirl has made the decision that…she doesn’t know what surgery is, but she knows...she’s NOT having it!
My daughter says she is praying for grace to deal with her headstrong daughter. I chuckle to myself and remember…I had a headstrong daughter.
And now…she has one too! As a parent, sometimes life has a wonderful way of repeating itself!

Into every sunshiny life, a little rain must fall.
I hear stories every day. To me, they are stories. To them, they are “lives interrupted by…life!”
They were minding their own business, waiting at a traffic light when someone runs the light and plows right into them.
As is life, the person who ran the red light walked away…the person whose life was interrupted did not.
Or the 34 year old new mother who had to postpone chemo because she was pregnant…and is now in stage 4, no chance for remission.
I always tell them…”Life is what happens when you’re making other plans… and no one plans for this!”
Then I tell them that I will pray for them. Pray for strength, pray for patience, pray for understanding, pray for comfort, pray for hope.

Maybe a little rain is falling in your life?
Maybe your Saturday plans have been unexpectedly changed by the sound of rain outside your window?
Maybe life has happened while you were making other plans.
The Word reminds us in Matthew 5:45…”That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.”

All we need to know “good” is to have had bad!
Do we really appreciate the sun until after we have had days of rain?
Sometimes Life happens to remind us that…
We really do have this “great gift” God gave us called “our life”…
It just took some rain to remind us!
Instead of dreading the rain… why not learn to dance in it!

Until next time…
I’m Just Sayin’…
Brother “A”